Cameron Buchholtz of the Rock 100.5 The KATT radio station conducted an interview with DISTURBED frontman David Draiman at this year's Rocklahoma festival, which was held May 27-29 at Catch The Fever Festival Grounds in Pryor, Oklahoma, just outside Tulsa. You can now watch the chat below.
Speaking about DISTURBED's current pyrotechnics-laden stage show, Draiman said: "We blow it up pretty good, that's for sure. We go through a lot of accelerant [laughs] up there. It gets hot. But we love it. We live for it. And certainly the fans seem to be responding to the pyrotechnics with a lot of excitement, so we're excited to bring it to 'em."
He added: "The most challenging part of it is that when you have that much pyro going on at specific periods of time, it burns off all the oxygen on the deck, so you really need to watch your breathing technique as a singer. I need to make sure I know where I'm taking my breaths, and it's not just for the sake of the music, but for the sake of the pyro hits too, so it's more challenging, for sure."
DISTURBED's "comeback" album "Immortalized", was released last August and debuted at the top of The Billboard 200 chart. That made it DISTURBED's fifth effort in a row to enter the chart at No. 1, a feat shared only with METALLICA and DAVE MATTHEWS BAND.
Read more at http://www.blabbermouth.net/news/david-draiman-on-disturbeds-pyrotechnics-laden-stage-show-we-blow-it-up-pretty-good/#ipzWHAPUxuZCOpPe.99
With ‘The Sound of Silence,’ Disturbed Finds a Crossover Moment
'I couldn’t be more flabbergasted by the whole thing,' singer David Draiman says
PHOTO: TRAVIS SHINN
On Disturbed’s “The Vengeful One,” lead singer David Draiman sings, “Hear the innocent voices scream, as their tormentors laugh through all of it.” Now the heavy metal band has an unlikely hit with their cover version of Simon & Garfunkel‘s wistful “The Sound of Silence,” crossing over into territory they’ve yet to experience in their 22-year career.
“I couldn’t be more flabbergasted by the whole thing,” Draiman says.
He adds, “[It’s a song] that my parents can play for their friends with pride without having to warn them not to be frightened ahead of time. I have fans saying, ‘Finally, me and my mom can actually agree on music for once!’”
The song has been on the Billboard Hot 100 since early March, peaking so far at No. 42 — a career high for the band. A recent performance of “The Sound of Silence” on “Conan” has racked up more than 10 million views on YouTube – the late-night show’s highest total views for a music performance.
The song continues to make strides in places where Disturbed’s music isn’t typically found. On Monday, a finalist on “Dancing With the Stars” used their version in one of the season’s final dances. Earlier this month, the band’s parent label Warner Bros. shipped the song to Top 40 radio, also a first for the band.
Disturbed’s last five albums have hit No. 1 on the Billboard charts, and their version of “Sound of Silence” has sold 660,000 downloads to date and has been streamed more than 54 million times, according to Nielsen Music.
Covering songs on an album isn’t a new thing for the band. On prior records, they’ve covered Tears for Fears’s “Shout,” Genesis’s “Land of Confusion,” and U2’s “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For.” In choosing “The Sound of Silence,” the band wanted to get away from the ’80s and go further back in time. They also ditched the guitars in favor of a piano.
“We had always had it in the back of our mind that this was the track on the record that was special,” Draiman says. “[But] we didn’t know if it would be convincing enough.”
Warner Bros. got wind of the cover in January 2015, when a few executives went to a private listening session in Las Vegas, where the band, on hiatus at the time, played them a few songs including “The Sound of Silence.” Xavier Ramos, a senior vice president of marketing for the label, left thinking it would resonate wide.
“It was pretty much a game changer,” Ramos says. “Both for their fanbase and expanding their fanbase.”
Still, Warner Bros. decided to roll out with two singles ahead of “The Sound of Silence,” songs that were more in the classic Disturbed vein of heavy guitars and charging rhythms. But the Simon & Garfunkel cover had steady individual download numbers after the record’s release, and Draiman says the label seized upon that.
“All of a sudden, the people at Warner Bros. started seeing what was going on organically and they reacted,” he says. “Where there’s smoke, sometimes you can help make a big fire.”
Warner Bros. credits the song’s popularity to the video for “Silence,” which was launched in early December 2015. To date, it’s gained more than 56 million views, a record number of views on YouTube for the group. Ramos says a majority of the video’s viral outbreak occurred through fans sharing it on Facebook, where people who weren’t typically fans of heavy metal or hard rock fell under its spell.
Draiman also says the band’s approach to music helps with its crossover appeal and the growing number of fans who have discovered the group through their Simon & Garfunkel cover.
“We pride ourselves in being rhythmic and aggressive, but we also have been intensely melodic,” he says. “Any of our root melodies, you could pull from our bed of music and place in any other bed and it will make sense. There’s still big hooks and I think that’s what they are discovering.”
"My interpretation of the song is that for hundreds of years my Deaf community has suffered oppression, marginalization, and language deprivation ... but now we're starting to find hope in this new world," he wrote on Facebook. "It is time for our soundless message to be heard, hence the Sound of Silence... It is our time."
He earned a dazzling 30 out of 30 from the judges, with Carrie Ann Inabadeclaring it the best she's seen in 22 seasons of the show.
Find out more about Disturbed – a heavy metal band best known for their early 2000s hits "Stupify" and "Down with the Sickness" and the long history of the song below.
1. It's been 50 years since Simon & Garfunkel debuted the tune. The duo originally recorded the song – written by Paul Simon – in 1964, but a remixed single was released in September 1965 and climbed the Billboard Hot 100 charts to the No. 1 spot.
"I think about songs that it's not just what the words say but what the melody says and what the sound says," Simon told NPR of the hit. "My thinking is that if you don't have the right melody, it really doesn't matter what you have to say – people don't hear it. They only are available to hear when the sound entrances and makes people open to the thought. Really the key to 'The Sound of Silence' is the simplicity of the melody and the words, which are youthful alienation."
Art Garfunkel and Paul Simon in 1967
COLUMBIA RECORDS / MICHAEL OCHS ARCHIVES / GETTY
2. Disturbed's performance of the song on Conan went viral Backed by a 15-piece string orchestra, the powerful performance from March 2016 has racked up over 10 million views, making it one of Conan O'Brien's most successful videos ever. (The band's video for the song has over 55 million views.)
3. Paul Simon himself reached out to the band to compliment their cover Simon caught wind of the Conan performance and contacted lead singer David Draiman to tell him how much he loved it.
"Really powerful performance on Conan the other day. First time I'd seen you do it live. Nice," he wrote in an email. "Thanks, Paul."
Simon even talked about the appearance on social media and during his press tour in the United Kingdom.
4. Lead singer David Draiman says he teared up when he first listened to the completed cover. "I listened to it three times before I even gave any response to [producer Kevin Churko]," Draiman told Blabbermouth. "And he got very nervous; he thought I didn't like it. But what I was actually doing was tearing up listening to it, because it had been so long since I have allowed myself to go to that place vocally, and hearing it, and hearing it come out as well as I thought it did was not just gratifying, but like having a weight lifted off me."
5. Disturbed's past five albums have debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 They join artists like The Beatles, Rolling Stones, Dave Matthews Band, Eminem, Madonna, U2 and Kanye West in that accomplishment. Their latest album, Immortalized, is available now.